28 September 2023

ActewAGL's EV solution for Red Hill development paves way for apartment projects

| Ian Bushnell
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Doma's The Parks in Red Hill

Doma’s The Parks in Red Hill: a complex environment for an EV charging solution. Photo: Doma Group.

Leading developer Doma Group, construction firm Bloc and ActewAGL have joined forces to install 35 7kW Ocular chargers at The Parks residential development in Red Hill, one of the largest EV charger installations for a Canberra development.

Thirty-three chargers have been installed in residents’ private basement carparking spaces, while two additional chargers will cater to visitors and be owned by the body corporate.

The chargers pair with intuitive Exploren software. Users can pay quickly and easily using the Exploren app, which offers access to a live charging session, or they can tap a provided RFID tag to pay for their EV charging on the spot.

They will add up to 50 km of range to the EV battery in one hour of charge.

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ActewAGL has repositioned itself in recent years as not just an energy utility but as a provider in energy efficiency, commercial solar, commercial lighting upgrades, and EV charging, as part of the overall energy transition and move to net zero emissions by 2045 in the ACT.

It’s a growing space and next month changes to the National Construction Code, obliging developers to ensure space in switchboards and EV chargers in 100 per cent of carparking spaces in new apartment buildings.

The new planning system will also make EV-ready infrastructure mandatory in new multi-unit and townhouse buildings.

The 7kw Ocular EV charger

The 7kw Ocular EV charger pairs with the Exploren software. Photo: ActewAGL.

Group manager, Energy Transition Products, Todd Eagles said the company was competing strongly in this space against a few other providers but it was the only one doing a turnkey solution.

“All the way from the early design through to the hardware selection, software integration and managing the warranty, and the longer term servicing,” he said.

“And we’ve been here for a while, we’re not going anywhere. So there’s comfort in working with us in developing these solutions.”

Mr Eagles said ActewAGL’s approach to Doma fitted the development timeline and the developer’s need for an EV charging solution.

He said that although the initial install catered for only 33 owners out of 136, the property was ready to expand coverage on demand.

Doma senior development manager David Jameson said the collaboration with ActewAGL helped overcome the complex challenges of a multi-residential environment.

“The Parks EV network was very much cutting edge where we had to overcome issues such as load management and registering chargers,” he said.

“Doma is well placed to offer an even larger residential charger network at the Brickworks [in Yarralumla], which is due to be released next year.”

Mr Eagles said the model developed for the Doma site – including the energy backbone, safety and cabling requirements, metering and load control – was replicable with other developers.

EV charging station in underground car park

Four at once: the new public EV charging station at Amaroo shopping centre. Photo: ActewAGL.

ActewAGL has also installed a public EV charging station at the Amaroo shopping centre in Gunghalin.

In partnership with Evie Networks, the charging station features 22kW dual-port wall-mounted EV chargers and can simultaneously accommodate up to four electric vehicles.

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It was funded as part of the ACT Government’s Public EV Charging Infrastructure Fund and contributes to the government’s commitment to have 180 public EV chargers available in the ACT by 2025.

In partnership with Evie Networks, ActewAGL has been expanding and upgrading its EV public charging network in Canberra and surrounds – with 15 charging stations capable of 27 simultaneous charging sessions to be up and running by later this year.

General manager ActewAGL Retail Rachael Turner said ActewAGL was taking a strong position on improving the sustainability of transport, with a commitment to help the local community achieve one in four households having an EV by 2030.

“An extensive, reliable, fast-charging network, powered by clean energy, is giving drivers even more reason to switch to an EV,” Ms Turner said.

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